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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Carole A. Kenner, PhD, RN, FAAN (Council of International Neonatal Nurses)
Description: This book tackles the complex problems of chronic disease care and healthcare delivery system failures. It focuses on why the U.S. healthcare delivery model does not work and what it would take to "fix" the system. The book's approach is unique in that it makes chronic disease the backdrop of the healthcare delivery discussions.
Purpose: The overarching goal is to address the healthcare system of today — its problems and the impact on patient outcomes — and describe success stories that have impacted change. The hope is to increase the awareness among health professionals, policy makers, and the lay public about today's healthcare failure and how this could be turned around to achieve "great health care."
Audience: Health professionals, consumers, and policy makers are the intended audience, but the book also can be used by students in the health professions, health policy, or public policy.
Features: First, the book describes chronic illness and explains why this is used as the context for the discussions of healthcare delivery. Subsequent sections address healthcare delivery systems and management aspects of chronic diseases. Specific success stories using the most common chronic illnesses illustrate that great care is possible in this country. The final section addresses next steps and what it will take to change the delivery system. Notable features of the book are the colorful graphs and the human interest stories that illustrate the most salient points. The color makes the book pop and draws readers through what could be dry material.
Assessment: There are many books that address the U.S. healthcare system. This book is unique in its approach and its delivery. The almost informal style helps readers to visualize the dilemmas faced in healthcare today. This is a good addition to an ever-growing body of literature.